Manely Firm - May 2019

All family law. All around Georgia. All around the world.

M ay 2019

T he F amily L aw C ommitment From General Pract ice to an Acute Focal Point

M ichael Manely first started The Manely Firm 30 years ago as a general practice. However, around 20 years ago, Michael began to concentrate strictly on family law. He is often heard saying: “Family law is a calling. You’re either fit for it, or you’re not.” “The problem with general practice,” Michael says, “is that you can’t dedicate everything you have into every field. Sure, if your client base is small, running a general practice may be necessary to bring in enough business to keep you afloat. But in a place like Atlanta, with its millions of people, it’s a whole lot easier for firms to focus on one aspect of the law.” For Michael, the calling didn’t come as a sudden epiphany or a light on the road; it came from his experience. Years of handling cases in every area made him realize he was more invested in family law than any other field. To Michael, the switch was natural. Michael knows the difference it makes when a firm dedicates their time, effort, and finances to one specific field. “Law is complex, and assuming you’re excellent in every field is an exercise in egomania. You need to specialize, otherwise, you’ll never master any field.” The Manely Firm takes this in stride. Working alongside nine other attorneys, each of whom specializes in a different aspect of family law, Michael ensures that all his clients’ needs are taken care of by dedicated experts.

For Michael, it’s more than just being an expert or successful in one area; a firm and its attorneys, needs to find what they’re most passionate about and nurture that passion. He says, “For lawyers to be successful, they need to find their passion in life. I say that family law is a calling because it’s true. Those who practice family law just for the money will never be as successful as those who have a genuine passion for the field. “Attorneys with this mindset don’t care for their clients, which results in a failed relationship between them and the people they’re trying to help. Family law attorneys are successful when they’re called to this branch of law. It requires you to take care of people who are emotionally vulnerable and, if children are involved, trying to protect their kids. It’s best to be completely committed to family law, rather than just being in it half-heartedly; that won’t help anyone.”

passion for family law grow over the years. “Something I’ve noticed over the years,” Shelia says, “is that human behavior often falls into patterns. Michael has been doing this for so long that he can recognize those patterns more easily than someone who’s facing a problem or situation for the first time. That’s the kind of amazing insight that comes from specializing in one area of practice. Michael can recognize what’s going on and understand the reason behind it.” This unique insight is why the firm is often accused of being clairvoyant. Family law is complex and diverse, but because Michael has dedicated his heart and soul to it, the firm has a level of understanding light-years ahead of what a generalist could ever hope for. The Manely Firm has the experience, knowledge, and dedication to support their clients, no matter the circumstance.

Shelia, Michael’s wife and a valued team member at The Manely Firm, has watched her husband’s


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